Monday, February 11, 2013

Wild And Dangerous Performances


Elephants, lions, tigers and leopards evoke fascination and awe, fear and excitement.This bookanalyzes trained acts in twentieth-century live circus and cinema,reveals how humans anthropomorphize animals with their emotions, and interrogates the notion thatanimals embody a phenomenology of emotions and feelings in culture.
Key Features
Author(s)Peta Tait
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Date of Publication16/11/2011
SubjectOther Performing Arts

Publication Data
Place of PublicationBasingstoke
Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ImprintPalgrave Macmillan
Content Note21 black & white halftones
Elephants, lions, tigers and leopards evoked fascination and awe, fear and excitement in the twentieth-century circus. Wild and Dangerous Performances: Animals, Emotions, Circus explores what happened when big cats roared on cue and elephants danced together. Acts in live circus and cinema reveal how humans anthropomorphize animals with their emotions. Trained animals became caught up in scientific precepts from Darwin on emotions and in opposition to animal performance. This history considers acts by Carl Hagenbeck, Frank Bostock, Alfred Court, Clyde Beatty, Mabel Stark, Patricia Bourne, Damoo Dhotre, Gunther Gebel-Williams and others in leading international circuses. Their acts featured: Nero, the horse riding lion, Rajah, the wrestling tiger, Sonia, the waltzing leopard, and Champion, lying like a fur collar across the trainer's shoulders. Descriptions of animal performers were vivid and moving, but completely contradictory. Animals embody a phenomenology of transacted emotions and feelings in culture, recently exemplified by Christian, the lion.Contributing to the growing scholarship in animal studies, this fascinating study has much to offer to anyone interested in circus animal performance, performance history, animal emotions and animal rights and ethics.   

No comments: